The Art Gallery of Ontario will start reopening next week

Jun 23 2020, 1:03 pm

The Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) has announced its reopening.

On July 2, the AGO will be opening its doors to members and annual pass holders, who book timed-entry tickets in advance.

Tickets can be booked starting on June 25 for members. Annual Pass Holders can start booking on June 26.

If you are not a member or pass holder, you can also purchase tickets online. Those ages 25 and under can sign up for free, before booking time to visit.

The public will be able to purchase timed-entry single tickets in advance, on July 16. The public will be able to start visiting the gallery on July 23.

The AGO will be opened every Thursday to Sunday, from 10:30 am to 5:00 pm.

“I know I speak for everyone at the AGO when I say we are thrilled to be welcoming people back,” said Stephan Jost, CEO of the AGO. “The team has been working hard to ensure that the visitor experience will be a safe, yet engaging one. I invite everyone to get out and reconnect with art. As we slowly get back to our new sense of normal, art can help lift our spirits, support our wellbeing, spark conversation and strengthen friendships.”

The AGO has said that reopening preparations have been underway for numerous weeks. They also said that their top priority is the health and safety of employees, volunteers, and visitors.

Anyone entering the gallery who is over the age of four will be required to wear a face mask. Physical distancing measures have also been implemented.

Tickets will be available in a limited amount for a 30-minute time slot. This is to “help control the flow of visitors entering the gallery.”

The ShopAGO physical story will also be open on July 2. It will be open every Thursday to Sunday from 10:30 am to 5 pm. It will be open to visitors with a timed-entry slot. Social distancing measures will also be in place in the store. There will be a curated selection of merchandise that will be available for purchase. Those who are looking to browse are encouraged to do so online.

AGO Bistro, Café AGO, the Espresso Bar in Galleria Italia, and the Norma Ridley Members’ Lounge remain temporarily closed.

On July 2, the J.S. McLean Centre for Indigenous & Canadian Art, the Thomson Collection of European Art, the Thomson Collection of Canadian Art, and the Henry Moore Sculpture Centre will be open.

Due to COVID-19, there have also been adjustments made in some of the exhibition schedules. The adjustments below have been provided by the AGO:

  • Originally scheduled to close in May, the AGO’s special exhibitions Diane Arbus, Photographs: 1956-1971 and Illusions: The Art of Magic have been extended until November 8, 2020.
  • Haegue Yang: Emergence, originally scheduled to open on April 30, 2020, will now open in September of 2020. Renowned for her moveable sculptures, Emergence highlights twenty-five years of art making by the acclaimed South Korean artist, including two new installations commissioned by the AGO: a large-scale Venetian blind work in the Joey and Toby Tanenbaum Sculpture Atrium and a mural-like wallpaper at the AGO’s South Entrance.
  • Andy Warhol, organized by Tate Modern, London in collaboration with Museum Ludwig, Cologne, the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto and the Denver Art Museum, will open in the spring of 2021.
  • I am Here: Home Movies and Everyday Masterpieces will open in spring of 2021.
  • The culmination of a multi-year international research project, Picasso: Painting the Blue Period will now open in Toronto in the fall of 2021. Organized in partnership with the Phillips Collection, Washington DC, the exhibition will bring together more than 80 works by Picasso from 12 countries.”

The AGO will also be continuing to bring free talks, performances, tours and art-making experiences to visitors who visit the gallery virtually. But, group courses, tours and programs will remain suspended.

“The AGO’s reopening plans are guided by government and public health officials and are designed to remain responsive. Decisions about when and how the AGO will welcome more visitors, and resume its popular free Wednesday nights, will be made in the coming weeks,” the AGO said in a statement.

More information on booking tickets can be found on the AGO website.

Irelyne LaveryIrelyne Lavery

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